Arthropods play an important role in maintaining the health of ecosystems, provide livelihoods and nutrition to human communities, and are important indicators of environmental change. Yet the population trends of several arthropods species show them to be in decline. Arthropods constitute a dominant group with 1.2 million species influencing earth's biodiversity. Among arthropods, insects are predominant, with ca. 1 million species and having evolved some 350 million years ago. Arthropods are closely associated with living and non-living entities alike, making the ecosystem services they provide crucially important. In order to be effective, plans for the conservation of arthropods and ecosystems should include a mixture of strategies like protecting key habitats and genomic studies to formulate relevant policies for in situ and ex situ conservation.
This two-volume book focuses on capturing the essentials of arthropod inventories, biology, and conservation. Further, it seeks to identify the mechanisms by which arthropod populations can be sustained in terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems, and by means of which certain problematic species be managed without producing harmful environmental side-effects.
This edited compilation includes chapters contributed by over 80 biologists on a wide range of topics embracing the diversity, distribution, utility and conservation of arthropods and select groups of insect taxa. More importantly, it describes in detail the mechanisms of sustaining arthropod ecosystems, services and populations. It addresses the contribution of modern biological tools such as molecular and genetic techniques regulating gene expression, as well as conventional, indigenous practices in arthropod conservation. The contributors reiterate the importance of documenting and understanding the biology of arthropods from a holistic perspective before addressing conservation issues at large. This book offers a valuable resource for all zoologists, entomologists, ecologists, conservation biologists, policy makers, teachers and students interested in the conservation of biological resources.